History on this day

Today, in 1994

Anna Nicole Smith Marries 89-Year-Old Billionaire

June 27, 1994

The 26 year-old topless dancer/playmate Anna Nicole Smith marries 89-year-old billionaire J. Howard Marshall. He died a little more than a year later, leading to an extended legal battle over his estate.
Quote: “I’m sick of being accused of gold-digging. It just so happens I get turned on by liver spots.”


Today, in 1954

War For Profit

June 27, 1954

The CIA director overthrows the democratically elected government of Guatemala to protect the profits of a company that he was on the board of directors of. The Guatemalan Revolution (1944-54) ends on June 27, 1954 when democratically elected Guatemalan President Jacobo Árbenz is overthrown by a CIA covert operation and a military dictator is installed. The Guatemalan Revolution, a popular uprising that began in 1944, ended authoritarian rule and brought to power Guatemala’s first democratically elected president. The new president instituted voting rights, a minimum wage, and land reforms which granted land to the peasants. This hurt the profits of the United Fruit Company, which benefited from the exploitative labor practices in Guatemala. United Fruit then began lobbying the U.S. to overthrow the new Guatemalan government. The CIA, commanded by Allen Dulles who was on the United Fruit board of directors, began covert operations that overthrew their government. Dulles’ brother, John Foster Dulles the U.S. Secretary of State, had been a lawyer for United Fruit. The former CEO of United Fruit, Thomas Dudley Cabot, was the director of International Security Affairs in the State Department.


Today, in 1976

Flight 139 – Raid on Entebbe

June 27, 1976

The PLO hijacks Air France Flight 139 to Uganda.
After diverting to Entebbe Airport in Uganda, the hijackers demanded US$5 million and the release of 53 Palestinian and Pro-Palestinian militants, 40 of whom were prisoners in Israel. They threatened to begin killing hostages if the demands were not met by July 1st. On June 30th, 48 non-Israeli hostages were released. On July 1st, after the Israeli government agreed to negotiations, the deadline was extended to 4 July and another 100 non-Israeli hostages were released. About midnight of July 3rd, Israeli commandos, led by Lt. Col. Yonatan Netanyahu flew into Entebbe airport undetected carrying a black Mercedes and Land Rovers to look like Ugandan President Idi Amin’s entourage. Yonatan Netanyahu was the older brother of Benjamin Netanyahu, future Prime Minister of Israel. Upon approach to the terminal, one of the guards, aware that Idi Amin had recently changed to a white Mercedes, ordered the commandos to halt. The commandos opened fire killing the guards and alerting the hijackers. The commandos then hurriedly proceeded to where the hostages were held, killing one hijacker and two hostages in the initial gunfight. They then located and killed the other seven hijackers. Ugandan forces assaulted the commandos as they were evacuating the hostages. In the ensuing battle, Yonatan Netanyahu and about 40 Ugandan soldiers were killed.
Of the 106 hostages, three were killed in the gun battle, 10 were wounded, and a 74-year-old woman was left in Uganda for medical treatment after choking on a chicken bone. She was later killed in the hospital along with several medical staff by Ugandan forces under orders by Idi Amin. Amin also ordered the killing of hundreds of Kenyans living in Uganda in retaliation for Kenya’s assistance to Israel in the raid.
The 1977 TV movie, Raid on Entebbe, was based on these events.


And today, who could forget this series?

Dark Shadows

June 27, 1966

This unusual daytime soap opera debuts on ABC. Dark Shadows was an American Gothic soap opera depicting the wealthy Collins family, where a number of supernatural occurrences take place, including ghosts, werewolves, zombies, witches, time travel, and a parallel universe. The series became hugely popular when vampire Barnabas Collins (Jonathan Frid) appeared ten months into its run.